When getting ready to sell your home, it’s important to stage it. That doesn’t necessarily mean you have to hire a professional stager to come in and do the work. There are many things you can do yourself to showcase your home in the best possible light for less money.
Before I get into the tips, I want to briefly talk about why staging matters. Studies have shown that staged homes sell faster and for more money than un-staged homes. A staged home helps buyers to see the potential of your home without having to use their imaginations. Many of us humans have a difficult time visualizing the potential of an empty room. Staging helps us overcome that lack. It makes an empty room appear larger and demonstrates the usefulness of the space.
1. Separate Yourself from the Home
You have lived in your home and made it your sanctuary. Your home is full of love and memories and security. A buyer doesn’t have those memories or time in your home. They see it as a house that may someday become a home. The most important thing you can do as you get ready to sell your home is to separate yourself from the sentiment and look at your home objectively. I know this isn’t easy. It’s my job as your agent to help you do that too.
We lead busy lives. Non-urgent things get piled on the kitchen table or in the spare bedroom or in the basement. Part of your prep work is going through those piles and putting them away.
In addition to that, it’s important to take down family pictures, remove extra furniture crowding rooms, pack up extra toys and knickknacks that are cluttering up spaces. You want buyers to look at your house – not your personal collections.
Buyers want well-lit homes. Go through all the light fixtures in your home and replace any burnt out bulbs. Also place the maximum wattage possible in each fixture. If you have rooms that are still dark, consider adding light to that room.
4. Make Your Entire Home Functional
If you have a nook that has been catching clutter, but never been used, repurpose it – make it an office nook or reading area. Turn an unused bedroom from storage to a workout room or guest room. Each room and space should have a function.
5. Organize Closets
One thing I can promise you about the home selling process is that buyers will look in your cupboards and closets. You want them to be organized. As part of your de-cluttering, too, don’t just throw everything haphazard into the garage or basement. Pack things up and put them neatly into your garage or basement. If you run out of space a low cost option may be renting a storage unit while your house is on the market.
6. Neutralize and Update Rooms
A fresh coat of paint does more to the look of your home than you can imagine. It’s one of the improvements that yields the most return on your investment. It makes everything seem new. It also makes it seem current. Think about removing old wallpaper borders from 1980 too.
7. Clean, Clean, Clean
Deep clean your entire home. Clean the baseboards, grout, blinds, carpets, windows, fridge, oven, oil your woodwork. Like paint, the return on your efforts is enormous.
8. Bring Out Your Inner Handy-Man
Fix broken light switches, leaking faucets, squeaky hinges, sticky locks, loose screen doors, cracked concrete. Those little nagging problems can make a buyer feel as though the house has not been cared for and the fixes are simple.
9. Don’t Forget About Curb Appeal
You only get one time to make a first impression. As you work inside, don’t forget about outside. Clean out garden beds and mulch them, water and mow the lawn, pressure wash your house, driveway, and sidewalks, and add a wreath do your door and planters to front porch. A fresh coat of paint on your front door can go a long way as well.
Staging can seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. I consider it part of my job to give tips on staging that can help you as we prepare to sell your home.